CT  CTH Tegan and Sara-a.jpg

Diminutive Canadian twins Tegan & Sara have been regular visitors to Australian shores since 2005, but it was their 2013 show that saw the girls make their debut at the Sydney Opera House. The night proved to be a special one, not least because the pair had taken many an awkward tourist photo outside the landmark over the years, and had made good on a dream to play there. This time, they were energetic, enthusiastic and victorious with their new album in tow.

With Heartthrob, the pair have moved away from the indie folk tunes that originally won us over. They’ve started to write more upbeat party anthems and they work. Tegan and Sara have added to their fan base without alienating the oldies.

The set list was comprised of all ten songs from the new record, plus some old reworked favourites. ‘I’m Not Your Hero’ symbolised the aforementioned seismic shift early on with ample glittery pop. The stage lights bathed the band in day-glo pink – fitting considering Heartthrob’s toe dip in the 80s. ‘I Was A Fool’ continued on within that buoyant mould in a musical sense, while the lyrics took a darker turn. But Tegan & Sara never let the mood become too melancholic, instead they lifted us once again with some soaring sing-song vocals during ‘I Couldn’t Be Your Friend’.

The classic ‘Back In Your Head’ received a riotous round of applause and the girls seemed to feed off the positive response from the audience. They waved and continually thanked us for being there and exclaimed how happy they were to play at the special venue. A group chuckle was had when Tegan Quinn said, “We made a poppy dance record and have made all you guys sit down”. Quite true, but no so much of an issue in our book.

At times the lovely ladies reminded me of the late Chrissy Amphlett. On the one hand they could sing so sweetly and sound so pure, but you also knew there was a bark to their bite. Their tales of broken relationships and being fed up with love also nodded towards Sarah Blasko. The girls wanted to make honorary Canadians out of us and the feeling is most certainly mutual.

During ‘Alligator’, Sara Quinn had keyboardist John Spence play the tune’s opening all over again. It was a slight, but the band hit no further setbacks. ‘Closer’ was delivered as another of our highlights of the night and their take on Tiësto’s ‘Feel It In My Bones’ during the encore was equally awesome.

Tegan and Sara’s set list:

1. I’m Not Your Hero
2. I Was A Fool
3. I Couldn’t Be Your Friend
4. Goodbye, Goodbye
5. Back In Your Head
6. The Con
7. Walking With A Ghost
8. Arrow
9. Shock To Your System
10. Love They Say
11. How Come You Don’t Want Me
12. Living Room
13. Where Does The Good Go?
14. Alligator
15. Drove Me Wild
16. Now I’m All Messed Up
17. Closer


18. Call It Off
19. Nineteen
20. Feel It In My Bones

Originally published on 1 May 2013 at the following website:

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